28 Attributes of Good Content Marketing to Rock Your Social Business!

PamMoore
Pam Moore Owner/Partner, Marketing Nutz, LLC

Posted on June 21st 2012

28 Attributes of Good Content Marketing to Rock Your Social Business!

 

iStock 000007682145XSmall1 28 Attributes of Good Content Marketing to Rock Your Social Business! Content marketing is the new buzzword. However, the truth is content marketing has been around for decades, since conversations and business have existed. Content marketing is not a new shiny object invented via social media. I wrote a piece on the topic you can check out here.

Is everyone really a content expert?

Every marketer, consultant, tweeter and Facebooker around seems to be talking about content marketing. Unfortunately very few of them have ever done it themselves or really know how to help others write or integrate content to drive real results.

If you are working with a social media consultant or agency be sure to look behind the magic curtain. Do they have a blog of their own? When is the last time they wrote good content? Is anyone reading the content? Is the content getting shared? Is it integrated with the rest of their business or is it an add-on band-aid? When is the last time they sent an email to the list of names they have been collecting via their blog the past year? Do they have an editorial calendar or any rhyme or reason to why and how they are using content marketing, if at all?

It’s similar to the concept of the Facebook page pushers of a year ago who were bashing “strategy” telling customers all you need to do is tweet and get a Facebook page for $1k with a side of a website that tweets for another $2k. It’s funny how now overnight they are all “strategy experts” yet in checking their career profile you’ll find they have spent little time to none actually ever doing strategy for any real business.

You get what you pay for with any service or product. The best thing you can do is educate yourself the best you can and do your research. It doesn’t have to be more expensive or take more time to do it right. Chances are finding a resource with the right experience to help your business will save you money and bring a higher return than many of the fly by night social media operations.

Becoming a social business is not the same thing as doing social media or being social. Social business requires integration of processes, mindset changes and direct investment in specific goals and objectives.

iStock 000009305021Small 200x300 28 Attributes of Good Content Marketing to Rock Your Social Business! What is content marketing?

Content marketing is an umbrella term encompassing all marketing formats that involve the creation and sharing of content in order to engage current and potential consumer bases. Content marketing subscribes to the notion that delivering high-qualityrelevant and valuable information to prospects and customers drives profitable consumer action. Content marketing has benefits in terms of retaining reader attention and improving brand loyalty.
*Source: Wikipedia

Content marketing is a marketing technique of creating and distributing relevant and valuable content to attractacquire, and engage a clearly defined and understood target audience – with the objective of driving profitable customer action.
*Source: Content Marketing Institute

I know what it is, now what?

I like simplify where many want to complicate. Below are what I believe to be the top attributes for content marketing that will drive results.

If you have spent any time working in marketing then this should seem like common sense to you.

Bottom line you want to develop content that inspires and connects with your audience with a goal of bringing them closer to you and your brand. You want them to click, double click, share, and come back for more.

28 Attributes of Content Marketing that Rocks! 

rock your blog sm 300x212 28 Attributes of Good Content Marketing to Rock Your Social Business! 1. Goal Driven - Set goals and objectives for each piece. Is the goal to inspire, educate, establish authority, generate leads? Should support higher level business and marketing goals and objectives.

2. Audience focused – Content must be focused on the reader more so than your own self promotion. Know your audience. Know what they want, need, desire. Get in their head and connect with them via content that helps them in business and/or life.

3. Findable – If your target audience can’t find it, it’s all for nothin’!

4. Shareable – Make it easy for people to share with their friends on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Pinterest, email, etc.

5. Simple – Shouldn’t require a PHD in rocket science to understand.

6. Authoritative – Author speaks and writes from knowledge, experience and authority.

7. Engages – People are inspired to click, double click, comment and become part of the community.

8. Actionable – Should be clear what action the reader should take to learn more, join community, contact you for further information, hire you, request proposal etc.

9. Real – Should have a healthy balance of transparency, authenticity and professionalism.

10. Believable – There should be no doubt that they can trust you and believe what you say. Many factors play a role with this including design & layout of site, source of content, grammar, quality of information, authority and more.

11. Validated – If facts, data, or stats are used the source is clearly provided and all can be validated as truth. This will also help establish authority and ensure content is believable.

12. Valuable – Provides reader with valuable content to help them learn, grow or be inspired.

13. Relevant – Should  be relevant to where the reader is in business or life.

14. Resonates – Should invoke a feeling of shared emotion or belief with the reader.  They should understand and be able to relate to the content, context and meaning.

15. Compelling – Grabs attention, unique enough to read, understand, persuade, change thinking and remember.

16. Integrated – Not stand alone information. You brand, expertise, experience, services offered should support the content to best establish authority, believability etc.

17. Educational – Provides value in regard to knowledge and teaching of a topic reader is interested in.

18. Passionate – Should be obvious the writer is passionate about topic and is not just writing to drive blog traffic or other objectives.

19. Positive - Who wants to read a blog that does nothing but complain? Not many people. Content should be positive and make the person feel better, know more and be inspired to do more whenever possible.

20. Forward thinking – Should not dwell in the past, old technology but should at minimum be present day and preferrably forward thinking. Take people along with where you are going if you are visionary person.

21. Inspires – Inspire readers to learn more, do more, be more and become one with you and your brand.

22. Connects – Inspires the reader to connect with you and your brand. Your goal is to build and nurture a relationship with them.

23. Achieves – Helps the reader achieve their goals. If you focus first on helping reader achieve their goals, you will achieve yours by default.

24. Purposeful – The content has a purpose, is not rambling, meaningless mumbo jumbo.

25. Brand loyalty – Content should help drive brand loyalty with reader. The content should be a good represenation of your brand, personality and not a glossy piece of corporate collateral from the 1990′s that describes what you wish you would be when you grow up.

26. Quality – Content is of high quality. Should not be written in a hurry, have grammatical errors or read like it was written by a 5th grader.

27. Open – Author is open to other ideas, willing to enter into a healthy debate and genuinely listen to differing opinions.

28. Conclusive – It has an end. It doesn’t just ramble and ramble but it is clear when the content piece starts and ends.

 

Avoid the following: 

1. Focusing too much on sales. You don’t want to sound like a used car sales person.
2.  Overly opinionated.
3. Closed minded.
4. Argumentative. Don’t bite the fingers off of your readers who may comment with a differing opinion. Be open to new ideas and opinions.
6. Egotistical.
7. Self promotion.
8. Random Acts of Marketing – If it’s not in the budget, not in the plan and not integrated then chances are it’s a RAM. RAMs will eat every last dollar of your ROI for lunch, breakfast & dinner. Avoid them at all cost!

 

iStock 000011885996Small2 300x166 28 Attributes of Good Content Marketing to Rock Your Social Business! Your Turn? 

What do you think? Do you agree with these attributes? What ones would you add? What content inspires and connects with you? What are your favorite blogs or content creators that capture your attention?

 Additional resources: 

Worksheet: Download our POST audience analysis worksheet to help you identify and prioritize your top audiences. It is based upon the Forrester POST methodology.

 

 

 
  

PamMoore

Pam Moore

Owner/Partner, Marketing Nutz, LLC

Half marketing, half geek, social media addict, CEO & Founder of Marketing Nutz @MktgNutz, entrepreneur, speaker, trainer, coach. Lover of strategy, ROI, Brand, God, Family, Friends, Beach & Life! 15+ years of experience helping small startups to Fortune 100 companies, budgets teeny tiny to big in both B2B and B2C markets build brand awareness, grow new markets, develop communities and master ROI across all mediums! Industries of expertise include high technology, non-profit & fundraising, green eco-friendly, enterprise data storage, professional services and storage management, real estate and home building, natural lighting, database analytics & modeling, online marketing, as well as web 2.0 ecommerce for online retailers. http://www.themarketingnutz.com

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Comments

Sandra Tedford
Posted on June 22nd 2012 at 5:42PM
Thanks for clarifying what content marketing should look like Pam. I've worked with clients to develop a content marketing strategy and I also blog. While I don't consider myself an expert, I appreciate the tips on what I can do to improve my brand.
PamMoore
Posted on July 27th 2012 at 3:36PM

Sandra, so glad the content & tips helped you. Best of luck to you and your business! 

ErinCNelson
Posted on June 27th 2012 at 5:14AM

Hey Pam - Thanks for the awesome post. My favorite sentence: "Becoming a social business is not the same thing as doing social media or being social." This is a concept many strategists, 'social media experts' and young companies struggle to grasp (or are mislead to believe). 

As far as leaders in the insustry: Joe Pulizzi (Content Marketing Institute), Joe Chernov (Eloqua), Brian Solis (briansolis.com), Stephanie Tilton (Savvy B2B), Aldath Arbee (Marketing Interactions), and Doug Kessler (Velocity Partners UK) -- are all cutting-edge, insightful and not afriad to push the envelope. 

As a knowledgeable content marketer yourself, I'd like to invite you to share your ideas on content marketing in our one 'Content Marketing Forum'. Present are interviews with and articles by leaders such as mentioned above. Shoot me an email if you are interested ([email protected]) and I'll send you the link to check out- look forward to reading more from you.

Cheers,

Erin  

 

PamMoore
Posted on July 27th 2012 at 3:35PM

Thanks Erin! Feel free to hit me up if seriously interested in a conversation.  You can find me on LinkedIn at http://www.linkedin.com/in/pmoore or via my blog at http://www.pammarketingnut.com  And of course I am only a tweet away and can send you my 411 via DM too :) 

getscripted
Posted on August 20th 2012 at 12:25PM

I'm curious what you think about the ability for content marketitng agencies to hit all (or most) of these marks. I know from running my own business that it's hard to keep the throttle high when you have customers to keep happy and bills to pay. Even though we are a content marketing company, it's a struggle to keep our blog and social media channels active.

What's your experience in recommending services to help SMB's create great, enganging, actionable content?

Ryan
Co-founder
Scripted.com

Ramya
Posted on September 8th 2012 at 1:32AM

Hi pam... It is a Very informative article on content marketing. Thanks for sharing do’s and don’ts to be considered while scripting an article.